OUR WILD neighborhood
Rena De Villiers
Read about elephants that come to the rescue of a buffalo; a human baby-sitter looking after lion cubs; how one can preserve a rainbow; how a warthog sets herself up as a peacemaker; how a kill by lions puts the seal on the sale of a house; and how a tiny frog has to pay the price for a flat alarm battery.
This book features the unique interaction between humans and animals in a town where the wild still reigns supreme and where man has to adapt and not the other way round. It represents a kaleidoscope of scenes and happenings that you can expect to encounter when living in a wild neighborhood.
The author’s way of expression testifies to her compassion towards the animals: She feels the pain experienced by a stricken animal; she feels like a traitor when she was compelled to have an ill baboon seeking refuge at her home put down; she steers clear of barbecued warthog at a game festival as it is “family”.
The writer had the opportunity and the great fortune to live amongst wild animals in the serenity of the bushveld, where the nightfall sounds of the daily tableau changes slowly into the nightly concert made up of sounds like the far-away call of the king of the jungle, the laughing of a hyena and the snorting of the hippo down in the river in front of her house.
The reaction to the original book intitled Dorp in the Bos (Town in the Bush) was highly favourable but it was felt that it was crying out for an English translation to considerably widen its appeal and open a large potential market in South Africa and overseas, particularly among overseas tourists visiting our national parks.
Born on a farm near Prieska in the Northern Cape, Rena de Villiers started out as a teacher before marrying a diplomat with whom she served in three different missions overseas spanning in total 17 years, including two four-year terms in Paris.
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